I've been living in Kampala for a little over a month & one of the biggest adjustments has been getting around the city without my own car.
See how I explore a common means of transportation called a boda-boda!
I miss my Blue Ivy.
I was so used to jumping in my little blue Nissan Versa I named #BlueIvy and joyriding to my heart's content. I'd find such peace in driving up the coast overlooking the SoCal ocean bumping my music, singing aloud like I was Beyonce. I was spoiled to being able to just roll out of the house into my safe vehicle and be wherever I wanted within a few minutes... ok maybe hours when LA traffic was heavy, but living here in Africa with no car, limited resources & barely any sense of direction it's been a real learning curve navigating these streets!
What is a Boda Boda?
In Uganda many people use what is called a boda-boda to move around. Bodas are motorcycle/scooter taxis that are super common here in East Africa. They are very cheap and are a fast option for getting around especially when there is traffic. These bicycles will zip and zoom, bob and weave right through traffic carrying a variety of cargo and usually multiple riders. Some of these taxis operate like Uber drivers connected to smartphone apps. Some even have helmets they provide passengers for a "safer ride"!
My (very short, slightly dramatic yet hilarious) boda ride!
In general I am not a fan of motorcycles, so when I moved to Uganda I vowed i'd NEVER ride one of these things- especially in this crazy traffic! Well tbh I still think bodas are super dangerous, but I can see how they are a necessity for many living here. While I am still #TeamNoBoda I decided to take a short ride in a very secluded area with no traffic. I gave the driver specific instruction to go SUPER SLOW! hahaha! I wanted to see what it felt like to sit & find my balance on one of these things.
Check out this clip of my (super short) ride!
How I really get around in Kampala
I am super blessed to live only an 8 minute walk from work. I burn these 3 calories happily each day! I'm also pretty lucky because I have some Uganda friends with cars. They REALLY help me navigate & explore this beautiful city outside of work hours. Also like I mentioned in my other blog titled #WorthIt I've been using Uber. The app works like it does in the States, but since street signs & home addresses aren't clear, it usually takes forever for the cars to find me. Instead of paying with credit card, people pay in cash at the end of the ride. No joke every time I get in the Uber the driver always freaks out when they hear my American accent. They always question me about my black identity HA! I need to take a 23AndMe asap so I can proudly represent one of these countries!
Anyways although I didn't die on the boda, I am still not comfortable riding them. Maybe one day i'll invest in a helmet but most likely, naaaaa! haha!
Thank youuuuu to everyone who continues to support me financially. Living and working here as a missionary-teacher has been a dream come true!! Your generosity helps me cover my financial obligations in the US, as well as Ugandan responsibilities for the year. Your donations- no matter how small add up and go a long way here!!
Ways to give:
1. PayPal: PayPal.Me/MelodyinUganda
2. Venmo: @Melody_Davis
Please feel free to ask questions, leave comments and if you aren’t already- follow me on Insta @melody_davis! I plan to make daily IG stories & weekly posts about how things are going! I love your interaction & support!!
Until next time!
Xoxo Melody Amber